In his first message of hope to the nation, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has expressed the desire to introduce major policy reforms to facilitate business community. According to him, laws are being formulated to attract investment in Special Economic Zones where investors will not only be free to transfer their dividends but will also have complete freedom of choice to move their capital anywhere anytime. He said that economic indicators of the country are stable and are on the upward trajectory. Various international institutions have acknowledged positive sentiments in the national economy. He also resolved to improve security ambiance in Karachi and elsewhere in the country to help the business community carry out trade activities. Quoting geographical importance of the country, he said that Pakistan was poised to play a major role in the regional economy and the government is seriously listening to tangible advices from the stakeholders on important policy issues. The main issue confronting the government is to restore investors’ confidence in its economic policies.
The circumstances under which Mr Abbasi took over the rein of the government are evident as he is burdened with great responsibilities. On one hand, he has to ensure continuity of the policies and projects launched by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and on the other he has to maintain political stability in the country. The dust of political tumultuousness has not subsided yet as Awami Tehrik Chief Tahirul Qadri and Pakistan Tehrike Insaf Chief Imran Khan are leading the show and want to oust the entire Sharif family from the political arena. In a situation, where chaos rules the nation, businesses get to flop and the economy gets to lose its credibility. Unless the country is divided into small administrative units, the politics of agitation and politics of confrontation will never end.
After 70 years of independence, the nation is still groping in the dark and doesn’t know which way to go. Mr Abbasi’s hopeful rhetoric is a good omen that he spoke about economy. However, his words would have no credibility until they match with his actions. Setting aside political expediencies, he will have to take tough decisions for the cause of national development. A number of mega projects are under various stages of their completion and consistency of policies and release of the required funds must be ensured.